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Ozzy Osbourne Is Open to Black Sabbath Reunion With Bill Ward

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

As Black Sabbath start work on a new record, Ozzy Osbourne says he’d consider a reunion with the band’s original drummer — but only on one condition.

“I hope Bill Ward can get his stuff together to do this, because one of the biggest things I’m proud of in my life was that Black Sabbath wasn’t a band that was created by some business mogul in London or New York — that we were four guys who had a great idea and it worked from record one,” Osbourne tells Esquire in a new interview.

Ward was initially part of a long-hoped-for Black Sabbath reunion that led to last year’s ‘13,’ their first-ever No. 1 album, but reportedly pulled out over contract disagreements. Osbourne, however, argued that Ward wasn’t in shape for the rigors of the huge tour that followed. Ward later underwent shoulder surgery, before admitting that his friendship with Osbourne was now broken.

As for the band’s next studio project, Osbourne said he’s started a conversation about song ideas with Tony Iommi. Osbourne also reiterated that this will be Black Sabbath’s finale. “The record company wants us to do one more record, and we’ve decided to do one more tour,” Osbourne said. “And at the end of the tour, we just disband and I go back to doing my solo stuff.”

Black Sabbath’s original four-man lineup, rounded out by Geezer Butler, hasn’t recorded together since 1978’s ‘Never Say Die.’ Osbourne, meanwhile, just released ‘Memoirs of a Madman,’ a 17-song career-spanning collection of solo songs.

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